Familiar Question at QB for UVa this Spring

It's becoming Charlottesville's early-spring equivalent to Groundhog Day in February in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.

Every year around this time, coach Mike London is asked about the situation at quarterback for his Virginia football team. The question came up again during a teleconference Wednesday afternoon.

"It's been very competitive, very spirited," London said. "Each of the guys that are practicing have stepped up their game tremendously, and it's what's needed for us to be a better football team."

David Watford will return for his junior season at UVa in 2014, after starting all 12 games for the Cavaliers last fall. Watford threw for 2,022 yards and eight touchdowns, but also threw 15 interceptions during UVa's 2-10 season.

London declared the starting quarterback job open again last month, prior to the start of spring practices. Watford's primary competition comes from a pair of rising redshirt sophomores, Greyson Lambert and Matt Johns.

Lambert threw for 340 yards, with a touchdown and two interceptions, as Watford's backup in 2013. Johns served as UVa's holder, but didn't take any game snaps at quarterback. London conceded Wednesday that that game experience is an advantage for Watford and Lambert.

"It's one of the critical factors, because they've been in a game," he said. "They've had to make calls; they've had to make throws. They've had to run an offense."

London said the quarterbacks have been alternating reps in practice this spring, and that no pecking order has been established. London wouldn't set a timetable on Wednesday for settling on a starter, but said the decision would be based largely on accuracy and efficiency.

"When?" London said. "That decision, as I said, will be largely based on when one player starts to separate himself from the other."

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